Chicago Health and Social Life Survey
(Portions on BLACKS)
For example, in the South Side African-American community, few people seek sex partners among African-Americans on the West Side, researchers found. The community also discourages homosexuality and provides few places where homosexuals can gather.
Members of the South Side community, like some people in other neighborhoods, also take part in a “hybrid” strategy in seeking partners somewhere between the transactional and the relational strategies. In the hybrid strategy, people choose to have short-term transactional partnerships, for instance, while maintaining a long-term relationship, or they maintain several relationships as long-term polygamy.
African-American men are much more likely than white or Hispanic men to engage in polygamous relationships, the scholars found. About 21 percent of the African-American men had at least two partners at the time of the survey, compared with 6 percent of men overall in Cook County.
Furthermore, the researchers found that polygamy is more common among better-educated black men, who presumably have more income. As a result, the number of men available for stable marriages in the African-American community is reduced, leading to the large differences in marriage rates between African-Americans and whites, the researchers pointed out. About 57 percent of black men have been married, compared with about 72 percent of white men, according to census figures.